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December 17
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Robert Corona and Nicole Hoffman

Robert Corona and Nicole Hoffman

[KHTS] – A traffic collision in the desert claimed the lives of two Santa Clarita residents over the weekend, according to one of the victim’s family members.

Nicole Hoffman, 19, and Robert Corona, 25, both of Santa Clarita, were involved in a collision on their way out to California City to go on a weekend trip with family members.

The fatal crash took place on Highway 14, near Highway 58, on Friday, near Barstow, around 9:15 p.m.

“She went to go turn around because she was ahead of me and I had to stop by the store with my friend in another car,” said Brittany Lauren Reph, Hoffman’s older sister. “When she turned around she was hit twice. After the first time, Robert got out to save her and that’s when they got hit again.”

Corona died that night, Reph said. Corona had been dating Hoffman for some time.

“Robert died that night trying to save my sister,” Reph added. “The love of his life, and my sister, was pronounced brain dead (Sunday), but she will be saving eight different people with her organs because she was a donor.”

That would have been very important to Hoffman, her sister said.

“My sister wanted to be a nurse and help people and now she is,” Reph said.

Nicole Hoffman

Nicole Hoffman

Hoffman, a recent Valencia High graduate, worked with Corona at the In-N-Out location on Bouquet Canyon Road, according to a mutual friend of theirs.

“They were both the happiest people,” said Crystal Chavez, who knew Hoffman and Corona for several years and worked with them. “Their main goal was to always laugh and make everyone else around them happier, and they always put everyone before themselves.”

“They had all this positive energy and they were friends with everyone, and they would eat everything,” Chavez joked, adding that the In-N-Out where they worked together had a family-like atmosphere, which is part of why it was so hard.

“We were all heartbroken, but we wouldn’t have expected anything less,” Chavez said, of the way Corona died. “He was always trying to help anybody (he could).”

Friends and family are fundraising to help out with the cost of memorial services, and anyone who is interested in helping out can contact Reph at 661-877-0102.

A vigil is planned for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at Central Park, and the times for both services have not yet been announced, but the story will be updated when that information is available.


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  1. Taylor Berry says:

    Thank you everybody for your support for Nicole, Robert, and our families. To see everybody flood the waiting rooms at the hospital, all the calls, texts, and emails. Bless you all and thank you so much.

  2. Emma Gordon says:

    Thank you all for your love and support through this tough time. I know the families need all of the support and love you are willing to offer.

  3. Kim says:

    So sorry for the loss, my sincere condolences and thoughts are with you at this difficult time.
    Acts 24:15

  4. Tiffany steffes says:

    Thoughts and prayers to both families! My heart is breaking over their loss! God bless you all and keep you in his care!

  5. naomi lopez says:

    May God bless the Corona’s & Nicole’s family. I’m heartbroken! I’ve known the Corona’s for 16 years. May their souls rest in peace! They’re both Heroes!

  6. Sean says:

    I’m so sorry for the loss of both Robert and Nicole. Nicole was always one of the kindest and sweetest people I knew and Robert always seemed to have an outlook on life that in life and in work, never forget to try to have a little fun. They were the two most positive people I knew.

  7. Sara says:

    Stephanie , I’m so sorry for your loss , my prayers will be with you and your family ,

  8. Pam Abraham says:

    I have known Nicole and Joey for over 10 years. Her smile would light up the room. I will truly miss her and I pray that God would strength this family. I would have never met this family if it wasn’t for Russ their Dad bringing them to church. Praying for The Lord to hold this family in His Arms, and specially their Mother Stephaine which I have never met.

  9. Phillip says:

    I did not know either of them, but my condolences go to both families, loved ones, and friends. So sad to see two such amazing lives be taken from us so young, let this not just be two people killed in a car collision like we hear on the news oh to often, people must take a look into these two’s eyes, and realize these were two such special, loved, and most of all, two characters with souls and identities that are going to leave, which I am very sure of, so many lives saddened, lost, and alone…. These two did not have to go people… they did not… they had plans ahead of them, family’s to look forward to raising beside with the ones they already had. people need to wake up… realize.. how we choose to take the responsibility of simply driving down the road, can change the lives of many in a heart beat… wake up people… take responsibility, and realize… this could have been your son, daughter, loved one or best friend, or that two cars that unfortunately were a part of this, could easily been one of us…. the roads are not a joke and should the very least been taken as one, because they take to many lives when seen so. God bless them both, and there family’s and friends.

  10. Melinda Cipriaso says:

    My deepest condolences to Russ and his family. My prayers are for your and your family, I’m so sorry for your loss.

  11. Devyn says:

    I went to school with Nicole and I can’t believe this happened, and although we weren’t close my heart goes out to the families and close friends of the victims.

  12. Paul says:

    Russ and both families,
    Condolences for your losses.

    You spoke so glowing of Nicole when you described the pictures in your office. I’m so, so sorry for your loss.

  13. Ana says:

    I am so deeply sadden by this loss. I had the pleasure of knowing Nicole. I would always see my caller ID and it said Nicole Hoffman. She would call every day, as she and my son were the best of friends. Very sweet young girl. We send you hug up in heaven Nicole. Praying for all the family.

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